Updated February 2022
As a shop owner, adding a social media marketing strategy can be huge for your business…and help you increase your profits exponentially.
It might seem like a pain to add social media to your lengthy to-do list but social media isn’t going away any time soon. In fact, it’s a marketing tool businesses are using to bring in more business – and you can too.
As digital advertising spending continues to surpass traditional marketing spending, social media continues to grow as one of the most important aspects of any business’s marketing plan.
An active social media presence not only helps you stay top of mind with current followers/fans/customers but it also helps you get in front of new ones. Plus, staying active on social is one of the best ways to get recognized by the media for cool things you have going on, exclusive sales, and more (trust us, we would know 😉 ).
Here are 5 simple ways you can improve your shop’s social media presence:
#1: Take Your Own Photos
The retail industry is a visually-driven industry. Before you sell people on how much your products will benefit them, you need to sell them on how incredible they look. So embrace your inner stylist and take photos of the items and products you sell. Don’t worry, you don’t need a professional camera to take really, really, ridiculously good looking photos. By using social media to create visual advertisements, you can draw people in and help them imagine having the products in their lives and what your shop’s vibe is like.
In our highly visual world photos and videos matter a LOT when it comes to consumer perceptions and spending triggers, and the way you showcase what you have to offer can make all the difference. Especially in the retail world! Pro-tip: Make sure your business is doing these small changes that will take your social media to the next level.
Taking your own photos might require more work, but it’s worth it. Social media was made for cute photos, and your followers want to see images and videos of your stuff. And again, any media looking to cover you can easily access your image gallery if you have nice, cute photos available. PLUS any potential customers can quickly see what you’re about.
#2: Update Your Hours
If your shop’s hours change seasonally/weekly/daily, make sure your social media accounts are up to date. You can easily edit hours under Page Info settings on Facebook, share an update to your Instagram Story, or send a tweet announcing the switch. And don’t forget about Google My Business! Here’s a quick how-to help you out! Remember, many people rely on Google to find out whether or not a place is open – so keep everything as current as possible!
#3: Share Your Sales & New Arrivals
“What’s new this week?” – everyone following you on social media. Keep your feed fresh by highlighting your sales and new arrivals when they debut. If people follow your shop, chances are they’ll be interested to know about the newest item you just got in or the seasonal sale that just launched today!
Promoting these things on social is literally the quickest way to reach hundreds – thousands of people who already like you. Remember, providing value on social is always important.
#4: Respond to Online Reviews & Comments
The number one rule about people: they like to be heard. People write reviews for different reasons, some people simply want to connect with the brands they love, others have an opinion they want to be acknowledged.
Try to make sure to personally respond to positive reviews and comments. When someone takes the time to share their positive experience with the world it’s a big deal (for you, them, and any potential customers reading the review), so show them how much you appreciate them with a few kind words.
Addressing negative reviews and showing appreciation for positive ones earns you major customer approval points. If someone does have something negative to say, make sure your response is personal and specifically addresses the reviewer’s concerns. Mistakes happen, how you respond to them matters much more.
According to a study by Reviewtrackers:
- 94 percent of consumers say that a bad review has convinced them to avoid a business
- 45 percent of consumers say they’re more likely to visit a business that responds to negative reviews
This same logic applies to social media. When people comment on your posts, whether it’s positive or negative, take the time to respond. Responding builds your credibility as a business. Think about it. You’d never completely ignore a customer’s questions when he or she is shopping at your store IRL. In a digital age, consumers expect this same courtesy online. Responding makes you seem more trustworthy and real, and thus people feel more comfortable doing business with you.
#5: Share Customer-Generated Content
You don’t have to take every single photo on your feed yourself! Instead share customer photos. When your followers tag your shop in their photos, they want you to see them and they want *other people* to see that they were there or that they bought something they really like.
At the very least you should acknowledge these photos with a comment or message. After all, these photos and videos are free advertising for your business. As for the really good photos, re-share them on your Facebook page, Instagram feed, or in your Instagram Stories. Re-sharing user-generated content saves you time and makes your followers feel special. It’s *literally* free marketing! You’re welcome.
And yes, your re-shares can be as simple as sharing the post to your Instastory when your restaurant is tagged! You can also re-post directly to your feed, just don’t forget those ever-so-important photo creds.
Want to take your user-generated content one step further? Creating a hashtag, like #hashtagstepoutbuffalo. This encourages people to share photos with you and generates a backlog of social media content for you to use. Trust us: the more options you have, the easier it is to create A+ content on a regular basis.
TL;DR: Social media is super important for businesses, especially small businesses, and especially shops. Keep these tips in mind as you create content and you’ll start reaping the rewards in no time!
Looking for more helpful content about social media? Check out our other articles here for free tips & tricks!
Want to know more about promoting your business on StepOutBuffalo.com?
At Step Out Buffalo, we help businesses promote themselves and their events on our website, email, and social media channels. Our team is comprised of experts who know exactly how to make your business or event stand out, and we’ll put you in all the right places so you get noticed by all the right people. Hit us up if you’d like to learn more about our business and/or events-based promotions – there’s a reason 94% of our readers go places they’ve seen on StepOutBuffalo.com